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Plugging into the Video Game Market Scott Tilghman, CFA| 410.799.8709 | Daniel Ernst | 212.400.7262 Trends, Challenges.

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Presentation on theme: "Plugging into the Video Game Market Scott Tilghman, CFA| 410.799.8709 | Daniel Ernst | 212.400.7262 Trends, Challenges."— Presentation transcript:

1 Plugging into the Video Game Market Scott Tilghman, CFA| | Daniel Ernst | Trends, Challenges and Opportunities in the Interactive Entertainment Market October 2009 Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 1

2 Hudson Square Research, Inc. Formed in August 2004, Hudson Square Research, Inc. is a New York based institutional equity research boutique and New York registered Investment Advisor focused on the technology, media, telecommunications, and consumer sectors. FUNDAMENTAL RESEARCH Hudson Square provides fundamental Buy, Sell, Hold research employing traditional top-down and bottom-up methodologies for valuation and risk assessment. PORTFOLIO APPROACH Hudson Square employs a unique integrated portfolio approach to coverage including hardware, software, semiconductors, service providers, and retailers from Kyoto, Japan to Framingham, Massachusetts. INDUSTRY CONSULTANTS With nearly 70 years of collective consultative and research experience, Hudson Square offers companies a strategic advisory perspective integrating both our cross- sector coverage and public market exposure. Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 2

3 Perspective I rather think the cinema will die. Look at the energy being exerted to revive ityesterday it was color, today three dimensions. I dont give it forty years more. Witness the decline of conversation. Only the Irish have remained incomparable conversationalists, maybe because technical progress has passed them by. – Orson Welles Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 3

4 Summary OPPORTUNITY EXPANDS During Fiscal Year 2009 (ending March 2009 – effectively comparable to Calendar Year 2008) video game software sales expanded 13% Y/Y to $28.7B – which by comparison is greater than global box office receipts of $27B. Nevertheless, the figure still represents just a fraction of the $1.1T global media industry. Technology advances are enabling game makers to tell increasingly realistic interactive stories, that coupled with online connectivity and accessible control mechanics, greatly expand the opportunity for the games industry. CYCLE NOT OVER YET While recent data points to a decline in video game industry sales, we believe the root is one part economic pressure on consumer spending, and two parts content as the current slate of new releases faces a tough comparison against the biggest games of last year. We do not believe the data mark the end of the game cycle. HOWEVER GROWTH HAS SLOWED Based on our detailed analysis of data from prior cycles coupled with a view to medium term plans of the platform makers, we forecast the peak for current generation hardware will occur in FY11 (Mar-11). As with the last cycle, we forecast the software peak will occur 2 years after hardware, in FY13. However, we expect total industry sales growth to slow from a 13% CAGR to a 1.9% CAGR through FY13. NINTENDO REMAINS LEADER With the Wii console, DS handheld, and related software, Nintendo remains the primary growth driver. Nintendo based hardware and software accounted for 47% of industry sales in FY09, up from 24% at the start of the cycle in FY06. We forecast the Wii installed based will expand from 50M at the close of FY09 to 161M by FY13. FOCUS ON QUALITY Given the dynamics of a slowing market, we believe outperformance will be driven by company specific execution, and on this metric we continue to like the prospects for Activision, Nintendo and GameStop. Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 4

5 Games and the Media Landscape GAMES EXCEED BOX OFFICE Following a 13% jump in global software sales, the video game industry has surpassed the film industrys box office receipts. In FY09 (ending March 09 – effectively comparable to CY08), core video game software sales reached $28.7.5B, vs. $27.0 at the film box office. Video game software revenues, however, still represents just a fraction of the $1.1T global media industry. AUDIENCE EXPANDS 65% of U.S. households play computer or video games. The average game player is 35 years old and has been playing games for 13 years. The average age of the most frequent game purchaser is 40 years old. Women over the age of 18 represent 33% of gamers, vs. boys age 17 or younger at 18%. In 2008, 26% of Americans over the age of 50 played video games, an increase from nine percent in Sources: Company data, Hudson Square Research Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 5

6 FY10 Market Down 19% Y/Y so far U.S. Market Down 19% Y/Y Based on NPD data, the U.S. market is down 19% Y/Y during FY10 YTD. Hardware sales are down 25.8%. Accessory sales are down 11.4%. Software sales are down 16.7%. International data points to a similar experience in both Europe and Japan. While we expect upcoming titles and the recent hardware price cuts will spur second half sales, many analysts have suggested the current cycle is over. As we discuss later in this presentation, we do not believe the cycle is over, we believe the recent downturn is the result of 1) very tough comparisons against titles like GTA and Mario Kart and 2) the economy with unemployment approaching 10% 6 Sources: NPD, Hudson Square Research Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report

7 Game Cycle History Points to Continued Growth LAST CYCLE HARDWARE PEAK IN YEAR 4 Between FY00 and FY09, 186.8M last gen consoles (PS2, GameCube and Xbox) were sold. In addition, a fourth console, the Sega Dreamcast sold over 10M units, though the console was discontinued in Sonys PS2 dominated with 76% of the market followed by Microsofts Xbox with 12% and Nintendos GameCube with 11%. Combined hardware sales in the last cycle peaked in FY03 at 32.8M units. SOFTWARE PEAK IN YEAR 6 In the last cycle, combined software sales peaked in FY05 at 368.1M units; Grand Theft Auto San Andreas (October 2004), and Halo 2 (November 2004) were released in FY05. OVERLAPPING CYCLES PROVIDE SUPPORT Even as the last gen cycle peaked, the total market slowed but did not decline as overlapping cycles, including handheld games, provided support. For instance, in FY05 as the PS2 fell 20% Y/Y, total PlayStation software units rose 5%. Sources: Company data, Hudson Square Research Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 7

8 Current Hardware Peak in FY11, Software Peak in FY13 CURRENT CYCLE SHOULD EXTEND Assuming the same patterns hold true from the last cycle, we would expect hardware sales to peak in FY11 at 53.6M units and software sales to peak in FY13 at 633.5M units. We forecast the installed base of current gen consoles (Wii, Xbox 360 and PS3) will grow from 103.4M at the close of FY09, to 296.3M by the close of FY13. We note our forecast represents 58.6% growth over the installed base of last gen consoles. SOFTWARE HAS ROOM TO GROW We forecast the current gen software market will expand from 412M games in FY09 to 633M games in FY13. As with the last cycle, attach rates have already peaked, as early adopters of the consoles were by nature more avid players of games. Attach rates peaked at 4.62 games per console per year in FY08, and were 3.99 in FY09. We forecast attach rates will fall to 2.14 in FY13. Sources: Company data, Hudson Square Research Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 8

9 Software Attach Rates Shift Up NINTENDO Annualized attach rates on the GBA at 0.9x were 17% higher than for the Game Boy, and at 1.4x, the DS is running 49% higher than the GBA did. Annualized attach rates on the GameCube were 45% higher than rates on the N64, and at 3x, the annualized attach rate on the Wii is running 54% higher than on the GameCube. We attribute Nintendos attach rate to its success in broadening the appeal of gaming across the family (e.g. Mom and Dad buy games like Wii Fit and Tiger Woods for themselves in addition to games for the kids). SONY While we believe Sonys software sales have been overshadowed by the larger installed base of the Xbox 360 and the Wii, the PS3 is also demonstrating a higher level of attach rates than its predecessor with attach rates up 37% relative to the PS2 on a cumulative basis. Sources: Company data, Hudson Square Research Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 9

10 NO CONSOLE MARKET Largely for fear of piracy, first party platforms have largely ignored the Chinese game market. Because consoles are often sold at a loss with profits made from software and royalties, the degree of piracy in China makes the console market effectively untenable. INTERNET / GAME CAFÉ BOOM With a low rate of PC ownership, the Internet café has become the primary distribution point for games in China. According to Pearl research, Chinas online game market rose 63% Y/Y in CY08 to $2.8B. But, China is banning foreign investment in online games. YOUNG MARKET According to Pearl, 70% of Chinas 298 million Internet users are under the age of 30, and 65% of those have played online games. China a Vast but Hard to Tap Market 10 Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report

11 PC Game Market BROAD PLATFORM The key advantage of the PC as a games platform is its virtual ubiquity. Where there are just over 100M current generation console owners there are over 1B PCs in use globally. In many markets like China, the presence of Internet cafés makes online gaming accessible to virtually anyone. NICHE MARKET However, while PCs are more prevalent than game consoles, PC gaming has a few limitations. A high-end gaming PC can cost as much as $4,000, vs. the most expensive game console at $399. We estimate the core PC market at $3.9B globally (excluding MMOs). Including MMO and other digital distribution / pay to play revenue streams, the PC Gaming Alliance pegs the total PC game market at $10.7B. Sources: Company data, Hudson Square Research Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 11

12 MMO Game Trends WOW DOMINATION Prior to the introduction of World of Warcraft (WoW), the market for MMO games was limited to a few million players, but since 2004, the market has grown to 17.9M subscribers, with WoW holding a 64% share. Over the last two years there have been several high profile MMO game launches, though none of those appear to have established a material subscriber base, and two of those, Tabula Rasa, and Hellgate London shut down within a year of launch. Because of the network effect (as the product base grows, the product becomes more useful to any one individual), we believe WoW is likely to maintain its leadership position for the foreseeable future. We estimate MMO revenues totaled $1.5B in FY09, up from $1.4B in FY08, although we note that market research firm DFC pegs the total online gaming market at $5.7B. Sources: Company data, Hudson Square Research Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 12

13 Mobile Phone Trends BRICKBREAKER Global market for mobile phone games reached an estimated $3.5B in FY09. Growth in the industry appears to have fallen short of earlier expectations. Limitations of handset technology, and a generally restrictive distribution mechanism likely explains the shortfall. iGAME Apple is solving two key hurdles to mobile phone gaming: 1) customizing every game for every device; and 2) distribution challenges. The iPhone/iPod Touch appear to be significantly altering the mobile phone game market. Still, control mechanics limit the scope of games that can be effectively played. For instance, using tilt to control games tilts the screen away from the player's field of vision. And, using onscreen virtual buttons that leverage Apple's touch sensitive screen also reduces the available space for depicting the game itself. Sources: Company data, Hudson Square Research Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 13

14 NOT GOING AWAY JUST YET Potential exists for an entirely digital model. But, a variety of technological and structural barriers prevent that transition this cycle, and might very well extend the physical media into the next cycle. We estimate the used game software market grew 30% Y/Y to $5.2B in FY09 – adding roughly 18% in retail sales to our estimate for the global new game software market. COUNTERCYCLICAL MARKET The market for used games tends to be countercyclical to the hardware market. Market serves both core gamers looking for content, and value-oriented gamers. The new market has expanded faster than the used market, those increases were driven largely by hardware. Therefore in the medium term, we expect used market growth will outpace the industry. Used Games Not Going Away Just Yet 14 Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report Sources: Company data, Hudson Square Research

15 ANECDOTAL To date, statistics on the digital game distribution revenues have been largely anecdotal. While the individual milestones provide a compelling argument, in our view, there has not been enough progress to paint a meaningful picture. In June, Microsoft reported over 21M Xbox Live registered accounts, up about 9M from June-08. In September, Sony noted increasing momentum with its online services with 20M registered accounts, up 12M since the start of the year. For FY09, Electronic Arts reported digital revenues (ex mobile sales) contributed $193M in sales, comprising 4.6% of total revenues, up 3% Y/Y and 55% since FY06. Take-Two launched the first of two Xbox 360 exclusive expansion packs for GTA IV on April 29. Titled The Lost and Damned, 1M downloads have been reported to an applicable installed-base of 8M Xbox 360 GTA IV owners.. As of May, about 54M downloads have been reported for the Guitar Hero franchise, and as of October, 50M for Rock Band. MOBILE APPS STORES With the launch of the Apple iPhone / iTouch software application store in July 2008, the Nintendo DSi Shop and Blackberry App Store in April 2009, and Nokias Ovi Store in May, there is growing momentum for digital games in the mobile world – a market largely geared for short time-filler games where digital distribution likely makes more sense in our view. ONLIVE One of the most intriguing new concepts we have seen in some time was the unveiling of OnLives plans to launch an all digital, console free game platform. While we believe the service will likely encounter material technical obstacles in the field, the service does portend to completely change the game industry – removing the first-party platforms from the picture (though we doubt Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo will merely roll over). Digital Distribution 15 Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report

16 Audiences Fragment Between 1979 and 2007, the prime time market share of the 3 major television networks fell from over 90% to under 40% as cable networks grew and audiences fragmented. The core market of consoles and portables accounted for 76% of game software sales in FY09. While new platforms like the iPhone and Facebook potentially open the game market to new audiences, we believe significant risk exists that those channels could cannibalize the core game market and fragment audiences in a similar fashion. 16 Sources: Company data, Nielsen, Hudson Square Research Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report

17 Market Remains Optimistic Despite the sales weakness, the video game market has performed very well. Globally the stocks are up 16.2% YTD, and the U.S. publishers are up 38.3% vs. 36.8% for the NASDAQ and 15.8% for the NIKKEI. We believe the disconnect is driven by continued expectations that the video game market will resume growth in 2010, and more importantly by expectations that the game market will hold an increasingly important role within the media landscape. Consensus expectations are for the video game group to grow sales by 8% in CY10 and earnings by 25%. 17 Sources: Company data, FirstCall, Hudson Square Research Note: Yen figures in billions Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report

18 Increasing Entry, Fewer Exits Venture financing appeared to have bottomed in 1Q09 at $3.19B, and increased to $3.67B in 2Q09. Video game related financing appear to be faring well with more than a dozen double digit financings over the last 18 months including: Big Fish, Bigpoint, Outspark, Onlive, Playfish, Pop Cap, Realtime, and Zynga. While M&A appears to be heating up, the aggregate M&A market remains subdued with YTD transactions down 56% Y/Y. Similarly their have been relatively few transactions in the games space which have included Bighole, Cryptic, and ID. Two notable deals were largely distressed situations; Eidos and Midway. 18 Sources: Company data, NVCA, Bloomberg, Hudson Square Research Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report

19 Broad and growing footprint of gaming devices – installed and portable consoles, smartphones, and PCs Publishers enhancing development across product segments and manufacturers-not the one horse race of the last gaming cycle Content remains the primary industry driver for the next several years Software attach rates are up versus previous cycle Expanding demographic – gaming is no longer constrained to a male teen target group Consumers voting with their spending – pushing gaming ahead of the box office as a preferred means of entertainment Increasing broadband penetration complemented by a rapidly increasing percentage of networked homes Strong appetite for gaming apps – 15K active (#1 category) of 85K available as of September 28, according to Apple Summary-Opportunities and Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report

20 Audiences may be fragmenting Lack of platform standardization increases development costs and risks Consumers place a relatively high trade-in value on packaged/hard copy media International piracy remains a key concern for developers/publishers. Digital content, albeit growing, is still a small portion of the traditional console-based gaming industry Bandwidth and network latency remain limiting factors Natural strategic buyers are increasingly concentrated Summary-Challenges 20 Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report

21 ANALYST CERTIFICATION AND IMPORTANT DISCLOSURES: The Research Analyst(s) principally responsible for the analysis of any security or issuer included in this report certifies that the views expressed accurately reflect the personal views of the Research Analyst(s) about the subject securities or issuers and certifies that no part of his or her compensation was or is or will be, directly or indirectly, related to the specific recommendations or views expressed by the Research Analyst(s) in this report. Hudson Square Research, Inc. has not previously received compensation, nor does it plan to solicit business from the subject company(ies) of this report. Hudson Square Research Inc, is not a broker dealer and therefore, among other things does not make a market for the securities recommended in the report. Hudson Square Research, Inc. is a New York registered investment advisor. Neither the analyst(s) responsible for preparing this report, nor Hudson Square Research, Inc. hold a position in the securities recommended in this report. Ratings Explanation BUY: Over the next twelve months, we believe this stock should outperform the average total return of the stocks in the analysts coverage universe. HOLD: Over the next twelve months, we believe this stock should perform in line with the average total return of the stocks in the analysts coverage universe. SELL: Over the next twelve months, we believe this stock should underperform the average total return of the stocks in the analysts coverage universe. Copyright, User Agreement and Other Information Related to This Report Copyright 2009 Hudson Square Research, Inc. All rights reserved. Receipt of this report constitutes your acknowledgement and agreement to the following terms: This research report is prepared for the use of Hudson Square Research, Inc. Institutional investor clients and may not be redistributed, or disclosed, in whole or in part, without the express written consent of Hudson Square Research, Inc. The information within this report (other than disclosure information relating to Hudson Square Research, Inc. and its affiliates) was obtained from various sources and we do not guarantee its accuracy. Hudson Square Research, Inc. makes no representations or warranties whatsoever as to the data and information provided in any third party referenced source and shall have no liability or responsibility arising out of or in connection with any such referenced source. This research report provides general information only. Neither the information nor any opinion expressed constitutes an offer or an invitation to make an offer, to buy or sell any securities or other investment or any options, futures or derivatives related to such securities or investments. It is not intended to provide personal investment advice and it does not take into account the specific investment objectives, financial situation and the particular needs of any specific person who may receive this report. Investors should seek financial advice regarding the appropriateness of investing in any securities, other investment or investment strategies discussed or recommended in this report and should understand that statements regarding future prospects may not be realized. Investors should note that income from such securities or other investments, if any, may fluctuate and that price or value of such securities and investments may rise or fall. Past performance is not necessarily a guide to future performance. Any information relating to the tax status of financial instruments discussed herein is not intended to provide tax advice or to be used by anyone to provide tax advice. Investors are urged to seek tax advice based on their particular circumstances from an independent tax professional. Foreign currency rates of exchange may adversely affect the value, price or income of any security or related investment mentioned in this report. In addition, investors in securities such as ADRs, whose values are influenced by the currency of the underlying security, effectively assume currency risk. Regulatory Required Disclosures Important disclosure information is contained on page 21 of this report 21


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